Bassoon Care Sheet


  1. Bassoons are expensive and delicate instruments. If they are treated roughly and not properly adjusted frequently by an expert repair technician, they will not play properly. Once a year, take your instrument to a repair technician or to a professional player or teacher who can test it and determine if it needs repairs or adjustment. Many “reed” problems are not “reed” problems at all: the instrument is simply not responding because the mechanism is out of adjustment.
  2. A special set of bassoon swabs are needed to remove the moisture from each joint after playing. Use several pipe cleaners joined together as a swab for the bocal. Submerge the bocal in warm soapy water and brush it out.
  3. Keep the corks on the joints clean and use enough cork grease so you do not have to force when assembling the instrument. Take the instrument apart and put to together slowly and carefully. Watch closely to see that the bridge keys between the joints do not get tangled with each other and bent.
  4. It is important to keep all of the accessories properly stored in your case. Loose accessories can damage the instrument. It is also important not to put music in your case as forcing it inside can damage the instrument.

A note about wooden instruments: These fine quality instruments are likely to crack if exposed to a sudden change in temperature or humidity. Keep your instrument where it does not reach extremes in temperature. Also, never blow through an instrument when it is cold; allow it to warm to room temperature first.

Suggested Maintenance Supplies: Cork Grease, Silk Bassoon Swab, Seat Strap, Reed Holder.

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